Testing Microservices

Simplify Testing of Microservices Architectures

Parasoft Solution for Testing Microservices

Why all the buzz about microservices?

When your application demands rapid development and you need to support continuous releases of an individual component in your application, you can embrace microservices. Microservice architectures enable you to focus on how a particular service is deployed, helping you scale individual components of your application without affecting the application as a whole.

With Parasoft's solution for testing microservices, you can test all microservices protocols (i.e. HTTP(S), REST, RabbitMQ, MQTT, Kafka) and message formats (i.e. JSON, XML, protocol buffers), to fully test and isolate your microservices. Parasoft technologies also help you understand the impact of changes that microservices bring to your environment, while employing vital test automation that drives quality at speed.

Parasoft simplifies the challenge of testing microservices by providing a comprehensive testing strategy for microservices architectures.

What are Microservices Architectures?

Microservices are lightweight, discrete services that have very specific functionality. Each microservice should be running in its own process, allowing you to build and develop the microservice independently. When it comes time to deploy that service, it should be individually deployable and individually scalable, so it can be updated without having to take the entire application apart or even restart it.

Microservices enable individual developers to choose the optimal technology for developing their service, without being bound to the large codebase. With microservices architectures, developers can design a service to be reusable, leveraged by the entire application to avoid constantly reinventing the wheel.

Orchestrated Microservices

One of the most common types of microservices architectures is orchestration. In an orchestrated architecture, application flows are predefined, and specific services are invoked as a part of this process. Typically when you design how an application will invoke different services in an orchestration pattern, you know what those services are and you set up a synchronous communication pattern between them. This creates tight coupling between you and the downstream services. Orchestrated architectures are typically deployed via REST/HTTP, and these types of architectures are already broadly in practice.

A microservice using orchestration will make one or more explicit calls to external services or dependencies. The calls typically use a synchronous request-response pattern and will often access REST-based services. If the services need to be called in a specific order, calls to a subsequent service are not made until a response is received for a call to a prior service. Because one service explicitly calls another, they are tightly coupled.

Reactive (Choreography) Microservices

One of the primary goals of a microservices architecture is to create independent components, so that deploying, scaling, and updating the services is easier. This goal is not completely realized when using the orchestration pattern because individual microservices have direct dependencies on other microservices. So developers can use the choreography pattern, also known as “reactive” or “event-driven” microservices. In this pattern, microservices do not directly reference each other, but instead push messages onto event streams to which other microservices have subscribed.

In choreography architectures, processes are event-driven, and react when information is delivered to them. As a result, things become much more decoupled and it's easy to scale and modify. Typically in a choreographed architecture, a queuing technology is employed over such protocols as Kafka, RabbitMQ, or even JMS. Because of their flexible nature, choreographed architectures are starting to become more common.

Learn how to create successful automated tests to take control of microservices testing.

A Microservices Testing Strategy for Orchestration

Test Services with Parasoft SOAtest

With an orchestration architecture, it becomes important to be able to test an individual service, and send specific information to that service in order to validate that the response comes back appropriately. Parasoft SOAtest allows you to communicate with that service using common message formats and protocols, such as REST/HTTP. It automatically understands which services to execute because it can consume the service contract and understand the endpoints and the various payload structures.

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Simulate Services with Parasoft Virtualize

One of the challenges of an orchestrated architecture is isolating individual components and achieving a stable test environment, given the tightly coupled nature of the services. To solve this challenge, you can leverage service virtualization from Parasoft Virtualize. Use Virtualize to simulate the responses that come back from the dependent microservices and deploy those virtual services on-demand when your test needs them. By leveraging service virtualization, you can focus on specific components and validate that their behavior is expected and predictable.

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A Microservices Testing Strategy for Choreography

Isolate Dependencies with Parasoft SOAtest

In a choreographed architecture, it's important to be able to push events to specific queues and validate that the microservices pick it up, operate on it appropriately, and push it to the correct queue or topic. Using Parasoft SOAtest, you can push specific messages onto the queues, using microservice-specific protocols and message formats such as Kafka, RabbitMQ, and protocol buffers.

SOAtest can also act as a consumer, waiting and listening to specific event streams, pulling off the messages, and validating their contents. By doing so, SOAtest provides the critical isolation that's required for microservice testing. And since SOAtest can data-drive requests, it simplifies the process of testing a wide variety of data inputs into your microservices, by creating your test case and then leveraging an external data source to drive the data and validate the responses.

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Change-Driven Testing for Microservices

When a service is updated, a key component of testing is understanding the impact of change and reliably remediating affected services. In both choreographed and orchestrated microservice architectures, there's going to be a significant amount of disruption, both at a service level and at the environment level. Parasoft SOAtest's Change Advisor helps you efficiently identify and assess the impact of change to a microservices request or response structure, map the differences between two versions of a service, and migrate your test cases and virtual services to the new version, significantly reducing the amount of time spent maintaining your test artifacts.

The Parasoft Continuous Testing Platform provides unique visibility into the impact of change by providing visual representations of your environment, along with associated test cases that can predict and identify environmental change. With this insight, you can understand the relationship between different microservices, and how other services are impacted if an individual service is going to go away or is fluctuating.

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